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Sondra Perry

Stories Made With Love: Sondra Perry’s Lineage for a Multiple-Monitor Workstation

by Paddy Johnson on July 7, 2015
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It’s an overcast day in March when Sondra Perry shoots her family portrait. She gathers the roughly ten members to stand in front of what we assume is her grandmother’s house, and asks them to hold up the American flag. They are all African American and wearing neon-green ski masks. “1-2-3,” chants Perry. “Cheese!” says the family.

A finder window pops up. The cursor clicks around and starts the music. “Everybody Loves the Sunshine” rings out and the window begins to slowly rotate and float back into the neon-green desktop wallpaper.

It’s a hypnotizing and beautiful entry point into Perry’s 25-minute “Lineage for a Multiple-Monitor Workstation: Number One,” a video that uses multiple windows on dual computer screens to invite viewers and her family to reimagine black identity and social history. Perry casts her relatives as themselves, and asks them to recall and reconstruct personal and fabricated family traditions. The result is a film that presents identity as half-true, half-constructed, and entirely mutable in the digital age. It’s a brilliant video, and one of the most worthy of attention I’ve seen in a long time.

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This Week’s Must-See Art Events: Give Thanks for Kate Bush

by Michael Anthony Farley on November 21, 2016
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It’s a slow week, but one with just enough good events to keep any Thanksgiving-related food coma at bay. Monday night, we’ve got two book release events with talks and more! Fragments of Metropolis – Rhein & Ruhr launches with a panel discussion at NYU’s Deutsches Haus and Douglas Crimp: Before Pictures is kicking-off at The Kitchen. Tuesday, rising video art star Sondra Perry speaks at SVA and bitforms gallery returns to its roots for a homecoming party. Wednesday, MoMA opens a Josef Albers exhibit that shows the color guru’s dark(room) side.

Thursday is Thanskgiving, so there are no art events. But if you can’t deal with the potential of seeing a Trump-supporting relative, I recommend teaming up with friends to support local immigrant-owned businesses instead! Post-holiday, there’s a bit of a slowdown. On Black Friday, check out a campy screening at Williamsburg’s Spectacle theater. Saturday Pioneer Works is hosting the Eyeworks Festival of Experimental Animation. If that’s not your thing, head to Roulette, where artists reinterpret the music of Kate Bush. That’s one thing we can all be thankful for.

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This Week’s Must-See Art Events: The Roving Eye

by Paddy Johnson and Rea McNamara on February 1, 2016
Yes, this is a Lorna Mills GIF.

Yes, this is a Lorna Mills GIF.

Legacies, transitions and milestones loom largely in this week’s slate of events. Black History Month kicks off in Harlem tonight at the Schomburg Center with a panel featuring Juliana Huxtable and Kimberly Drew among others dwelling on Basquiat’s life and legacy. Further on the BHM-related tip, decolonial knowledge is dropped by Tabita Rezaire at MoCADA’s Window Gallery, and the representation of black and queer personhood is re-assessed in Sondra Perry’s selection of video works for MoMA PS1’s Sunday Session.

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This Week’s Must See Events: Suggested Double Dates

by Paddy Johnson and Michael Anthony Farley on December 14, 2015
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This week, good events come in pairs. Art handling gets its moment of glamour with a charity calendar launch on Tuesday at Field Projects and a workshop at the Cue Foundation on Saturday. Wednesday night, hop from holiday parties at Postmasters and Ortega y Gasset. Or attend Sondra Perry’s screening and artist talk at EAI. Perry also has a closing reception at Recess the next night. And if simulacra of tragedies is your thing, check out the creepy photos of Corinne May Botz at Benrubi Gallery or Vincent Tiley’s “Sad Pretty Boys” at Christopher Stout Gallery, on Thursday and Friday respectively.

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GIF of the Day: Petra Cortright’s System Landscapes

by Paddy Johnson on August 24, 2015

Petra Cortright

Petra Cortright’s floral digital paintings command a lot of attention these days, but given the choice, I’d pretty much always look her system landscape GIFs from 2007. Perhaps it’s just a preference for her choice of media, but I also consider the work more important for its early example use of the computer environment as a compositional device. We see that a lot more commonly now—new and established artists like Camille HenrotSondra Perry and Saul Chernick have all used the commuter screen to frame their work with great success—and with good reason. It has a large presence in our minds and shapes how we see the world. Cortright was sensitive to this earlier then most.

Unlike most landscapes, which suggest passage through them, many of the animations in this series show us the places, but prevent us from entering. At every mapping stage there are broken notices like “Try Again.” and “Door is Closed.” Later in the sequence, the images switch to small growing flowers surrounded by wire frames that size up as the plants get bigger. By the end the windows have become tiny. “Connected” reads one, followed by “Disconnected.” Ten “Cloud Forest”, then a seemingly endless number of tiny squares with landscapes, each reading “Away Message.” “I’m back!”




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Remixing Intersectional Feminism At Pittsburgh’s Miller Gallery At Carnegie Mellon University

by Emily Colucci on February 15, 2017
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Even as feminism experiences a resurgence, there’s still a marked lack of representation of women of color and gender nonconforming individuals in both art and political activism. This disparity was recently debated on an international level with the criticism launched at the disproportionately white and cisgender Women’s March. A current show HACKING/MODDING/REMIXING As Feminist Protest at Pittsburgh’s Miller Gallery at Carnegie Mellon provides a direct rebuke of this continued inequality by emphasizing the power of intersectional feminism (feminism that embraces multiple, overlapping social identities beyond gender, including race, ethnicity, sexuality and class).

The exhibition leads by example by bringing together a group of twenty two artists who fracture and rearrange technology to create their own narratives within male-dominated fields like gaming, net developing and computing. Organized by artist and game developer Angela Washko, the show, in many ways, is an answer to the much-reported lack of women in tech industries (Washko cites a 2013 study in her introductory wall text, stating only 26% of the positions in computing jobs in the U.S. are held by women). But, with its smart and diverse curation, HACKING/MODDING/REMIXING As Feminist Protest goes further than exhibitions about feminism often go, taking on race and other identity issues. This makes the show not only politically relevant, but also necessary viewing during our current feminist revival.

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Girl Power Is Back: Top 10 Shows For Women In 2016

by Emily Colucci on December 21, 2016
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Despite the misogynistic horror of Donald Trump’s campaign and eventual election victory, 2016 was a great year for women in the art. There were compelling solo exhibitions by women artists in major institutions, a copious list of all-women group shows and dynamic revivals of unfairly overlooked female artists’ careers. It seems like 2016 marked the return of much-needed 1990’s-style “girl power.”

Granted, there’s still a long way to go for equal representation, particularly for women artists of color. But, hopefully, this is just the beginning. To celebrate this year’s exciting and timely return to feminism, I selected the ten best shows featuring women in 2016. Results below:

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The Best of Art F City, 2015

by Rea McNamara on December 31, 2015
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Revisiting the ‘Simple Net Art Diagram’, reviewing an art fair’s virtual tour, calling out Georg Baselitz, breaking news on the USC MFA Class, and even bringing back nerdocracy. Readers, we truly feel a real sense of accomplishment for the stories we wrote in 2015, especially after amassing them in a ‘Best of’ list such as this. We not only paid artists to attend art fairs, but also investigated sexism is arts publishing and even had two Renaissance cosmetics experts dish on body hair removal. Who else publishes this shit? No one.

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The Best Unrepresented Artists of 2015

by The AFC Staff on December 28, 2015
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As 2015 comes to a close, the internet is awash with “top 10” and “best of” lists. But one art world metric of success that’s under-discussed (and nearly-universally sought) is gallery representation. So we’ve asked past and present AFC editors to weigh in on the artists that commercial galleries haven’t snagged exclusive contracts with yet—despite acclaim from critics, museums, and audiences. In the interest of gender parity in the notoriously sexist world of gallery representation, we’re each selecting one male-identified and one female-identified artist.

To that end, here are the best and brightest boys and girls who’ve yet to be drafted

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